EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT) — Dozens gathered for a Pray for Peace rally at Evansville’s Four Freedoms Monument on Sunday.

This comes as Israel expands its attacks on what it calls terrorist targets, two weeks after the Hamas terror attack in Israel.

Some at the rally in Evansville voiced opposition to what they say is genocide of Palestinians in Gaza.

“We would like to ask our leaders to speak up for the people of Palestine. There’s genocide being committed, and it’s our tax dollars that are also involved, right? We’re helping to support a military regime, again, that is complicit in apartheid,” said Naheed Murtaza.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin say the United States is ready to protect American forces or personnel in the Middle East should the Israel-Hamas war escalate as they expect.

President Joe Biden and Pope Francis spoke on the phone for about 20 minutes Sunday, addressing the need to “pinpoint paths of peace” in world conflicts, the Vatican press office said in a brief statement.